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Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I: 50th Anniversary [Hardcover]

Julia Child , Louisette Bertholle , Simone Beck
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 45.00
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Book Description

Oct. 16 2001
This is the classic cookbook, in its entirety—all 524 recipes.

“Anyone can cook in the French manner anywhere,” wrote Mesdames Beck, Bertholle, and Child, “with the right instruction.” And here is the book that, for more than forty years, has been teaching Americans how.
Mastering the Art of French Cooking is for both seasoned cooks and beginners who love good food and long to reproduce at home the savory delights of the classic cuisine, from the historic Gallic masterpieces to the seemingly artless perfection of a dish of spring-green peas. This beautiful book, with more than 100 instructive illustrations, is revolutionary in its approach because:

• it leads the cook infallibly from the buying and handling of raw ingredients, through each essential step of a recipe, to the final creation of a delicate confection;

• it breaks down the classic cuisine into a logical sequence of themes and variations rather than presenting an endless and diffuse catalogue of recipes; the focus is on key recipes that form the backbone of French cookery and lend themselves to an infinite number of elaborations—bound to increase anyone’s culinary repertoire;

• it adapts classical techniques, wherever possible, to modern American conveniences;

• it shows Americans how to buy products, from any supermarket in the United States, that reproduce the exact taste and texture of the French ingredients, for example, equivalent meat cuts, the right beans for a cassoulet, or the appropriate fish and seafood for a bouillabaisse;

• it offers suggestions for just the right accompaniment to each dish, including proper wines.

Since there has never been a book as instructive and as workable as Mastering the Art of French Cooking, the techniques learned here can be applied to recipes in all other French cookbooks, making them infinitely more usable. In compiling the secrets of famous cordons bleus, the authors have produced a magnificent volume that is sure to find the place of honor in every kitchen in America.

Bon appétit!

Frequently Bought Together

Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I: 50th Anniversary + Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume 2 + Julia's Kitchen Wisdom: Essential Techniques and Recipes from a Lifetime of Cooking
Price For All Three: CDN$ 66.35


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Review

"Has it really been 40 years since Julia Child rescued Americans from dreary casseroles? This reissue, clad in a handsome red jacket, is what a cookbook should be: packed with sumptuous recipes, detailed instructions, and precise line drawings. Some of the instructions look daunting, but as Child herself says in the introduction, 'If you can read, you can cook.'"
- Entertainment Weekly

From the Back Cover

"Has it really been 40 years since Julia Child rescued Americans from dreary casseroles? This reissue, clad in a handsome red jacket, is what a cookbook should be: packed with sumptuous recipes, detailed instructions, and precise line drawings. Some of the instructions look daunting, but as Child herself says in the introduction, 'If you can read, you can cook.'"
- Entertainment Weekly

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Rarely are we able to say with certainty that a book is at the top of its subject in regard and quality. This book, 'Mastering the Art of French Cooking' by Julia Child, Louisette Bertholle, and Simone Beck is certainly in that most unique position among cookbooks written in English and published in the United States.
With Julia Child's celebrity arising from her long series of TV cooking shows on PBS, it may be easy to forget how Ms. Child rose to a position with the authority that gave her the cachet to do these shows in the first place. This book is the foundation of that cachet and the basis of Ms. Child's influence with an entire generation of amateur and professional chefs.
It may also be easy to forget that this book has three authors and not just one. The three began as instructors in a school of French cooking, 'Les Ecole des Trois Gourmandes' operating in Paris in the 1950's. And, it was from their experience with this school that led them to write this book. To be fair, Julia Child originated a majority of the culinary content and contributed almost all of the grunt work with her editors and publisher to get the book published.
The influence of this book cannot be underestimated. It has been written that the style of recipe writing even influenced James Beard, the leading American culinary authority at the time, to change his style of writing in a major cookbook on which he was working when '...French Cooking' was published. Many major American celebrity experts in culinary matters have cited Child and this book as a major influence. Not the least of these is Martha Stewart and Ina Garten. It is interesting that these first to come to mind are not professional chefs, but caterers and teachers of the household cook.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
There are two reasons to buy this book, along with its companion, Mastering the Art... Volume 2.
First, and most important, "Mastering" is an essential reference book on the French style of cooking. Whatever you're trying to make -- from simple things like chicken stock or scalloped potatoes or coq au vin to something that would try the patience of Job -- it's probably here, and with detailed, step-by-step instructions. Whether you follow the recipies literally or devise your own shortcuts, you'll know what's "right" and be able to make your own choices about what to do.
Secondly, it's a breakthrough book and a classic, capturing the state of French cooking and Americans' knowledge (or lack) at a particular point in time. In addition to the step-by-step instructions, the recipies are full of offhand comments about who taught Julia what and on the nature and source of the ingredients.
There are two aspects of these books which make them not for everyone. First, Julia brooks no shortcuts. Even relatively simple dishes can take some time. Second, the instructions are extremely detailed. This can be a virtue, but it can also be frustrating. A recipie can run several pages. This makes it a bit challenging to see the big picture of how the recipie is structured, or to find your place again once you've cleaned your knives and your hands (for the fourth time.)
That having been said, if you like to cook French and you have any interest in the classic recipies prepared the classic way, this book is indispensible.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The bible of French cooking for Americans. July 10 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I have been using this book, and it's companion Volume 2, for over 20 years. It is by far the best cookbook for French cuisine on the market. The clear, step-by-step directions, with extensive illustrations, carefully guide you through each recipe. It teaches all of the basic techniques required to become proficient in the greatest cuisine in the world.
Try Julia's chocolate mousse and you'll never use another recipe,(but you will have to walk it off). I'm ordering a replacement copy from Amazon because my original is has been so used the binding has fallen apart! I wouldn't be without it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the best! Feb. 22 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I have been a subscriber to high-end food magazines for decades, and have an extensive collection of cookbooks. This is the best cook book in print, without exception. I remember when Julia came on the scene when I was a child. It was, no exaggeration.....innovative. She used words we couldn't pronounce, showed us how to make dishes we were unfamiliar with, and showed us techniques that were unheard of to the American public. Almost 40 years later, the American palette has become more sophisticated and the food options available to us seem endless. This book stills holds up as the best. It is the primer for understanding French cooking, and mastering invaluable techniques in the kitchen.
I love good food and enjoy cooking. The problem is, after twenty something years cooking I still have to admit that I have no natural talent or culinary instinct. EVERYTIME I use this book I am successful. Don't let the title of this book intimidate you. This book was written in large part with the novice in mind.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must for Any Serious Cook Feb. 9 2002
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This cookbook is fantastic, a wealth of basic techniques and tastes. The depth is such that you can spend years with the book and still learn more. If you are an aspiring cook, or know someone that is, this is a perfect addition to the kitchen.
You can take what you learn from this book and easily improvise on the basic themes. Your friends and family will be impressed :^)
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Bon Appétit!!!
A great book for my sister's birthday!!
Published 6 days ago by Brigitte Plume
5.0 out of 5 stars I bought it because our copy of volume 1 was ...
I bought it because our copy of volume 1 was worn out. Pages were missing, including a large part of the index.
Published 1 month ago by paul
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing then and Amazing now!!!
This is the 'book' to refer to learn a wonderful style of cooking, an art actually. This book was an amazing project that took years of dedication to the craft, so that the rest... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Anna Beale
5.0 out of 5 stars A must buy!
I absolutely love this book! It was much cheaper on Amazon as well. The book is an easy read as Julia seems to be narrating throughout all of it with easy tricks to pick up. Read more
Published 3 months ago by carolynn blanchard
1.0 out of 5 stars KILLER 2
Mon Dieu! I just read the biography "Bertie, a life of King Edward VII of Great Britain. Despite his talents he was a true voluptuary. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Eric R Fisher
5.0 out of 5 stars French Cooking
I haven't made anything out of the book yet. I saw the movie of Julia Child and that inspired me to buy the book.
Published 6 months ago by Maureen Olson
5.0 out of 5 stars Good start
If you are looking for something that will help you to improve basic French skills it is a good start.
Published 7 months ago by Tadeusz
5.0 out of 5 stars Happy Cooking
For all you bakers and chefs, this is the real deal. Julia Child is the ultimate in chefs and has put together this wonderful cook book for all. Read more
Published 8 months ago by imsewfine
5.0 out of 5 stars Exactly what you order
If you are a Julia Child's fan, this is perfect for you... it is exactly what it says it is. If you like to cook and try new things, this is for you.
Published 8 months ago by elvilak
5.0 out of 5 stars Mastering the Art of French Cooking Volume 1: 50th Anniversary
On l'aime notre Julia Child!!!!

Un jour, à l'usage, ce livre sera sûrement tout taché et plein de beurre et de crème 35%.
Published 18 months ago by Ghyslain PARENT
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